Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Waltrip's Monday Night Future May Change


He is a franchise for SPEED who dates back to the early days of the network being called SpeedVision. He is an institution who has outlasted multiple show hosts, many panelists and several US Presidents.

He has survived tough personal issues, a devastating start to his Sprint Cup Series team and several mediocre seasons behind the wheel. Now, he appears to be on the verge of another major change that may well affect his TV career.

Michael Waltrip Racing is scheduled to make a major announcement next week. It is widely rumored that Waltrip will remove himself from driving in 2010 and hand Martin Truex Jr. the keys to the #55 car. This will allow Waltrip to focus on his team ownership and his TV career in the broadcast booth.

It was Johnny Benson and Ken Schrader who partnered with Waltrip for many years on Monday nights. The show on both SpeedVision and SPEED had several different names as the sponsors changed for NASCAR's top series. It began as Inside Winston Cup Racing from a hole-in-the-wall studio at Sunbelt Video in Charlotte, NC.

Over the seasons, TV executives had also come and gone behind the scenes. Johnny Benson was rudely dismissed from the show without as much as a goodbye or video tribute. Benson did not have a Cup Series ride and the former SPEED management wanted younger Cup drivers on the show.

Eventually, Schrader also was eliminated when the program became This Week in NASCAR and moved to the new High Definition SPEED studios in north Charlotte. Schrader also no longer drove in the Cup Series, so he could react to the highlights but was now unable to speak from a first-hand perspective.

If Waltrip steps away from driving in 2010, he may join the list of former panelists who are no longer active in the series. In all the years that the show has aired, there has never been a Cup Series owner as a regular panelist, except for Waltrip.

Chad Knaus was the first non-driver to participate in the show on a regular basis. He brought a spark and a new perspective to the program that is missed when only Greg Biffle and Waltrip are on the show. Having a crew chief's view really rounds-out what the drivers are telling host Steve Byrnes.

Ironically, the first video clip on this Monday's show was Waltrip getting spun at Loudon by Scott Speed. Waltrip finished the race in 24th position and is currently 32nd in points for the 2009 season. The good news is that none of that seems to affect his TV presence.

Over the years, Waltrip has always been "the show" on Mondays and that continues. Now, paired with Byrnes, Waltrip runs a string of inside jokes during the show that almost always has his fellow panelist looking confused. Monday was no exception.

TWIN is now in HD, on a big TV studio set and surrounded by fancy artwork and graphics. In a way, it has become like many other modern TV sports shows. Stripped of the quirkiness that included the regular dumpster pick-up, Waltrip operating the replay control and Allen Bestwick on the verge of a stroke, the show is searching for a new identity.

SPEED provided a big boost when they allowed the program to begin showing the highlights of the weekend's race first and then previewing the next race. Having SPEED demand that the preview lead the show was a big mistake and put the show behind in credibility and viewership.

Now, things are hitting a comfortable stride with viewers. Knaus and Biffle are known quantities who speak well and are comfortable with Waltrip's hijinks. Byrnes is a steady presence who SPEED viewers see regularly on the NASCAR trail and comes to the show with tremendous racing credibility.

While the technical issues have come a long way, Monday's program still suffered from the audio troubles of this season. When the first highlights were rolled, the NASCAR Media Group tried to mix the "natural sound" of the cars under the commentary. The zooming of the cars drowned-out the announcers.

On the next video clip, loud rock music rolled under the pit crew highlights. Once again, it was hard to hear the panelists until the video was over and the music stopped. Then, the race highlights had both the rock music and the "natural sound" of the cars. Needless to say, it just did not work.

One element that may affect this is the studio layout. The talent wear clip-on Lavaliere-style microphones but have to turn their heads each time to speak to a different member of the panel. Poor Greg Biffle was in the middle and swung his head from side-to-side during the entire show. It might be time for a change.

TWIN provided a solid recap of all three races from the weekend along with some great features and a preview of the upcoming Daytona race. Drawing from the NMG library, this show cannot be beat for exclusive footage and outstanding editing.

There is little doubt that the Monday TV franchise for SPEED will continue next season. However, there may be some issues to iron-out before the 2010 shows begin in February. We will all know next week if one of those issues involves a certain Sprint Cup Series owner who may well retire as a driver.

TDP welcomes your comments on this topic. Just click on the comments button below to add your opinion. This is a family-friendly website, please keep that in mind when posting. Thanks for taking the time to stop by.

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89 comments:

Anonymous said...

I've only been watching a couple of years on Monday Nights as my son has gotten me back into NASCAR. I was unaware of Mikey's history with Monday nights and have to say, he'd be SORELY missed as he provides comic relief AND driver's expertise.

Driving or not, Mikey NEEDS to be on that show for the fans, the network, and the sport.

Dot said...

If Boris, Ray & Ricky can be on NN, Mikey can still be on TWIN. Just because he won't be driving, it doesn't mean he won't know what's going on. Mikey is TWIN/INC/IWC.

Anonymous said...

I'm praying that Waltrip gets his walking papers and takes that idiot Rutledge Wood with him. Would love to see somebody like Marcos Ambrose or Kevin Harvick get the gig.

Robert Upchurch said...

I loved the old IWCR, and it hasn't been the same since Bestwick left. I was a weekly viewer then, but very seldom since.

Anonymous said...

Off topic, but, you know AB is in charge of the Monday NN, if that was ever in doubt . . .

Tonight we have another New England favorite driver, Steve Park, as the driver on the panel.

Oh, and Whelen Modified highlights not only existed, they came a segment BEFORE Nationwide highlights.

Anonymous said...

I don't see how it affects his role if he is just an owner-only instead of a driver-owner. At the end of the day, his value is in his humor and personality.

Also, I don't see why Waltrip is leaving the 55-car. I wish he would stay. Frankly, I don't think Martin Truex Jr has any proven ability to finish significantly better than Waltrip. Truex has not been great and he probably had better equipment in his old ride than he will have at MWR. Mikey is such a sponsor's dream (he carries the Napa commercials with his comedic timing), how is Truex going to add benefit to that? If Waltrip races in 2010, sure, he might finish the season a disappointing 32nd in points... but is it going to be that much better for him or his team to have Truex finishing 29th?

Anonymous said...

It's obvious from reading the numerous Nascar blogs, that many are disatisfied with the television coverage of Nascar events. Many shows have been experimenting with new formats. MW is totally over exposed. Twin should replace MW and Byrnes,who would be a good pit reporter with Sheheen or AB. With difficult financial times,I'm surprised to see Punch,Rusty,Brad,Marty Reed, Weber,Wally,etc.still on TNT. I'd get rid of all of them. Nascar Cup coverage reminds me of Monday Night Football where a bunch of guys in the booth are determined not to have a second where they aren't enlightening us all with their wisdom.

Anonymous said...

enough of MW I left that show when Jonny and Kenny were gone. The only information he offers is who his sponser is. Go away mikey, I don't watch the Truck races because he is in the booth.

SallyB said...

I used to make sure never to miss the monday night recap with Schrader, AB, Johnny B...and Mikey. I've tried the new format and find it just doesn't 'click' for me. Over the years I've been overexposed to Mikey and his schtick. If he leaves the show because he is no longer an active driver, as were Kenny and JB, then I might give it a try again.

Anonymous said...

I agree with many of the posts

IWCR was the best sports show on television. The chemistry was magic and the content and information was funny and insightful.

The guy-or girl- who created that show was brilliant. I assume that exec is not with SPEED anymore?

50 yr. fan said...

Consensus in my neighborhood is
Waltrip overload (both). Time for
a new face on TWIN and Fox.

BToS JD said...

Waltrip is a polarizing influence on TV broadcasts. Personally, I'm on the side that no longer watches shows he's a member of.

He was almost acceptable on the older Monday night shows where he was still half asleep during the early recording. He'd wake occasionally and prod Kenny, then go back to sleep. Waltrip is good when Waltrip is sleeping. The 'talk over everyone else' Waltrip is off my radar.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 5:48am. my wife read your statement, she swears I wrote it,I agree with you 100 percent.We
also tuned out of the truck races
because of Mikie. Mikie and Bill
Weber needs to have their own show
together! They could call it Stupid
and Ignorant (take your pick.)
Tks.JD. Ron Il.

Anonymous said...

To many of us really old Nascar followers, the longevity of MW's career has been one of amazement. In twenty-four years,he won four Cup races-all for DEI on the Superspeedways when he and Junior would literally play with the competition. There was a lengthy,excellent article in April on racintoday on the development of those DEI plate motors and their domination from 2001-2005. Mikey's personality has endeared himself to a lot of racing fans,but as with all of us...its time to move on!

Deborah said...

Michael pretty much is TWiN and I think even those who claim to hate his presence on the show may not have as much interest in watching because it seems that some watch only to be able to complain about him afterwards. There are few others in the sport with as much personality or as much of a sense of humor as Michael but beyond that he brings a very valuable perspective to the show as a driver and owner. It used to be that the panel was only made up of drivers but Chad Knaus is now a regular so if there is a willingness to have a crew chief on the show, it seems to me even if Michael is only racing a limited amount or not at all next season he'll still be at races as owner and can still contribute just as much as he always has. A lot of fans seem to take issue with Michael because they disagree with his opinions, especially since he often defends NASCAR's decisions, but I think it's important that the show doesn't have a panel full of people who will only say what fans want to hear. This fan would stop watching the show if Michael wasn't on it.

rich said...

IWCR will always be the mark to equal in my opinion. In the early days wasn't Ned Jarrett the front man for it?
Michael is always knowledgible and only occasionally grates on the nerves.
Actually I have been impressed with his ability to start a Cup team and not just with one car. A big job.

rich said...
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RonFWNC said...

Waltrip's situation is different from that of the drivers who have appeared on TWIN and its predecessors. He made the show a success, and remains its primary attraction, due to his intelligent analysis and offbeat sense of humor. I don't think that his bosses at SPEED would be foolish enough to dismiss him just because he's stepping out of the car.

The real question is will Waltrip want to continue. He's going to have to sit there and watch every race in order to participate in the discussions. And if he has one weakness as a broadcaster it is a short attention span.

Finally, I'm glad that Michael is retiring as a driver. He's been one of my favorites for a long time, but I don't think his heart is in it anymore. He had his taste of success behind the wheel during his DEI years, and I'm grateful for that. Now it's time to bring his abilities to winning as an owner, and that should be his primary focus.

Vicky D said...

I think Greg Biffle is the weak link on this panel they need someone else. Chad is good and so is quirky Mikey. I have gotten used to Steve especially after them changing the format to the last race shown first on the show. That was a big mistake last year. Have gotten used to the show's name being changed every few years also.

Anonymous said...

personally I will be thrilled if Waltrip leaves. His pathetic attempts at humor constantly stop any real discussion and his need for all the attention would be rude in a 3 year old. I believe that other drivers, like Vickers, quit the show because of him.

Anonymous said...

That would be the best thing they could do for TWIN - get rid of Waltrip. Too many times he monopolizes the conversation and cuts off someone else who actually has something interesting to say. He also takes a long time to say nothing.
Maybe they could get a driver to take his place.

GinaV24 said...

Waltrip is the main reason that I no longer regularly tune in to many of the Speed channel shows including TWIN. When Johnny and Ken Schrader were on IWC with him, I liked Allen, Ken and Johnny enough to put up with Waltrip's silliness. Now, I rarely watch the show. I also do not watch the truck races on Speed unless I know that Waltrip will not be in the booth. He monopolizes the conversation, a lot like DW does, it's all about ME! and the constant sponsor plugs take away from the race broadcasts.

I'll continue to stay away from these shows as long as Waltrip is the gorilla in the room.

d said...

Love the show, have been a faithful viewer many, many years. When Mikey hasn't been able to be on the show it just isn't any fun to watch. I enjoy his humor. I love the combination of Chad and Michael. I think they need to keep Chad,(crew chief perspective) Michael (owner/driver perspective) and Steve. If they want to add another driver that's fine too.. Bif if finally loosening up, he was pretty good Monday night. If Michael isn't on TWIN, not worth watching to me....

Anonymous said...

Even though mickey is a little quriky and likes to hog the limelight,he is much more informative and entertaining than punch,wallace,and petree.They say the same stuff week after week.They are so biased it isn't funny.Beleave it or not,there are race fans that have drivers they like besides the same 2 or 3 that punch,wallace,petree mention endlessly like they are bein paid by those driver and speak to the fans as though we are ignorant.

Anonymous said...

A little of Mikey goes a long way just like his brother Darrell.
I'd like to see a more serious and informative person added simular to Knaus. It's this circus atmosphere that is alienating some of the old NASCAR fans.

Cathy said...

Let's face it....Michael IS that show!! He is, and always has been, the reason that the show has enjoyed the popularity that it has over the years. Regardless of his driving status, he is a successful team owner and provides that viewpoint in his analysis. Chad isn't a driver but contributes to the context of the show...Michael will do the same as an owner if he isn't a full-time driver. Speed needs to keep Michael on that show if they want to see continued success with TWiN!!

Anonymous said...
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KoHoSo said...

In a way, it has become like many other modern TV sports shows. Stripped of the quirkiness that included the regular dumpster pick-up, Waltrip operating the replay control and Allen Bestwick on the verge of a stroke, the show is searching for a new identity.

The show had an identity and Speed took it away bit by bit for no good reason. Yes, the original idea was to have drivers currently in the series review the race and the issues of the day. However, that was not really why people tuned in. The show became so beloved because of the personalities and, most importantly, how they blended together -- Mikey going off on his rants (in the days before he started taking himself too seriously), Schrader keeping Mikey in check when he went too far, JB adding the quiet but concise point, And Bestwick holding on for dear life.

Yes, the latest incarnation of the show can still have its moments but I still hold to my view that it was a huge mistake to do the things that Speed/Fox has done to it. In addition, love him or hate him, if Mikey goes, who will replace him that will bring any spontaneity to the show? In today's NASCAR where so few drivers have the breadth of experience of a Waltrip, Schrader, or Benson that are also truly funny on a consistent basis, how does it go on and not get replaced by more worthless "reality" programming without the unlikely prospect of adding somebody like Tony Stewart?

The best solution other than bringing back the original panel would be to keep Mikey as the "old timer," add a new driver with enough spunk to stand up to Waltrip, and eliminate most if not all of the "feature pieces" to make room for more commentary...you know, that talking stuff that made everybody love the show in the first place.

Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...

I had no idea this show was even on still. I stopped watching two years ago when they canned Betwick for no reason and had, I think, Brian Vickers on as a regular (who was just awful on camera).

No thanks, Speed!

Anonymous said...

Without Waltrip, the show would be just another Nascar news show. What would be the draw? Say what you want, but the quirkiness, inside jokes, and entertainment value provided by Mikey is a reason to watch the show. We review the weekend, preview the next and laugh most of the time. This household would not tune in if it was just another NN type show.

banzaibonnie said...

I too,will quit watching twin the day mikey leaves. I,ve been watching since day one,and michael is,was,and always will be the show for most of us.

Michele said...

Without Mikey, there is no TWIN. All shows need some kind of humor and Chad and The Biff don't have it without Mikey. I think an owner/part time driver(Mikey), a crew chief (Chad) and a driver(Greg) will expand the perspective. As a driver, Mikey gets most of his knowledge of what occurred from watching the race after the fact and in replays anyway. As an owner, you expect he will be at the track watching everything unfold. After 25 years, he certainly can understand what a driver is experiences without actually having been in the race.

Anonymous said...

I stopped watching anything that Mikey was on a long time ago. I love watching the Truck racing, however, only do so when Mikey is not there. I cannot stand his endless sponsor talk there is enough of that relating to the race. As far as I am concerned he talks as if everyone watching the race is stupid, and we are not. We know if we like a race or not. If he goes I will be watching a lot more of the racing shows on TV.

Had Enough

Anonymous said...

Rumor is Truex Jr in the 56 and Mikey in the 55 on a limited schedule in 2010, which shouldn't change his SPEED duties....I hope.

Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...

I believe that other drivers, like Vickers, quit the show because of him.

Of course, you have no evidence to back this up, primarily because it is not true.

Anonymous said...

MW is usually entertaining, although at times is a bit much to take. However, without him TWIN is just boring. Rotating Ambrose & others to replace Biffle would be a good thing.

Anonymous said...

TWIN is usually just a replay of Michael and JJ weekend races with Michael clowning it up the rest of the time. Now how great would it be if we could watch a real program without Michael's antics and with a sane review of what really happened on the track. The thought of Michael going more deeply into Nascar's TV programming just about makes me choke. Hearing his brother is bad enough, but the 2 of them I couldn't take. If he's out of full-time racing, please take him out of full-time TWIN and racing. I actually listened to the truck race last weekend and enjoyed the absence of Michael.

Anonymous said...

Does anyone seriously feel Truex will finish the season higher in points than Waltrip would have?

Anonymous said...

Whether or not you want Waltrip to step out of the car, you have to choose the lesser of two evils. Continue to watch him ride in the back and spin out every week because he can't drive, or end up in the booth annoying the heck out of most everyone. I'd choose to keep him in the car. I can deal with seeing him on the track, but I cannot, and will not, listen to a race with him in the booth. I quit watching the truck races that he calls, as all he adds is non-stop ramblings, just like he does on his Monday night show. The man is an idiot, he is not funny, can't drive at the cup level. The only way he is even in a ride now is because of two things, his last name and his true talent of smooching the sponsors butt to make up for his lack of driving talent. Just stay in the back and let me watch you spin out every week, PLEASE don't go to the booth.

dawg said...

When this show first started, I watched it. My admiration for Johnny, & Kenny, overrode my feelings for Mikey.
As time has gone on, & sadly as his co-hosts have also. Mikeys Sthick, & his non stop shilling for his sponsors. Have driven me away from anything that he is on. With the exception of the Trucks.
I would not be surprised if he were to show up in the studio, dressed in "The Aarons Lucky Dog" custome. Maybe he could arrange to have Old DW show up in the Digger costume!

Newracefan said...

TWIN without Mikey would be just a shadow of it's former self. I would still watch as I do now when Mikey is occasionally not there but I would really be disappointed if he was out altogether. When he permanently steps out of the car and really can not relate to what they feel like or how things are working they need to add a third panelist because I would be crushed of we lost Chad. The Chad and Mikey TWIN's are the best thing about Monday.

Anonymous said...

Personally, I like MW on TWIN,

It's not NN, All buttoned up, stay on target, don't stray from the script, tow the ESPN line of "we have to do this show because... and how about that Manny Ramirez!"

I like TWIN for it's spontaneity, It doesn't take itself so seriously, I have fun with the highlights, and many times you get a comment during them that hints at the "real" feeling behind another driver, team, etc.

While MW does interrupt the other panelist, when is the last time Chad didn't get his point across? Chad is the perfect foil for MW, others are like deer in the headlights most times.

If you want to improve TWIN keep Chad and MW as the permanent panelists. An Owner/Driver with 24 years of experience and a 3 time championship Crew Chief certainly bring knowledge and insight to all of the "Experts" in the viewing audience.

Judging by some of the comments, I guess maybe they would like to have Kyle Bush and Robbie Gordon be the regular panelists and Jery Punch as the host.

Anonymous said...

I've stopped watching The Speed Channel on Mondays and the truck series all together because I was tired of watching the Waltrip Infomercial.

Anonymous said...

Kyle (loudmouth thinks he knows everything) Petty, and his idiot friend Supid Rutledge, David (despied) Despain, Bill (Mr. Priss) Weber need to be taken off the air for good. Wally Dallenback & Allen Bestwick would make an awesome pair!

Anonymous said...

Mikey is the reason I stopped watching that show after Schrader left. It became the MW in defense of Toyota show.Rutledge Wood has made several Speed shows un-watchable thank god for Tivo and fast forward . Monday nite on ESPN2 is the only motorsports news show left and of course Dave on wind tunnel. NASCAR made a decision to attract the "NEW" NASCAR fan which is why the Backstretch seating will not be open at Daytona next week and the race is only 30% sold out...JR Trenton Fl

Anonymous said...

I watch very little of TWIN because I can't stand Waltrip. He is the most rude and arrogant person on the show, can only take so much of him.
When he get's caught cheating and lying , then he doesn't want to be on camera. Can't beleive anything he says. Hope he goes. The sooner the better

Anonymous said...

"I don't think Martin Truex Jr has any proven ability to finish significantly better than Waltrip" when's the last time Waltrip was in the top 20 in points 2004? Truex Jr has done that every year of his career. I dont think Walrtirp has come close to making the chase. Truex Jr has made the chase before. And has won two busch titles but I guess that means notheing.

Dannyboy said...

JD:

" Waltrip runs a string of inside jokes during the show that almost always has his fellow panelist looking confused "

Since I've followed your excellent blog I've gotten the impression that your professional side is often called into play when discussing MW, who you seem to tolerate but not much more.

My personal observations from being a fan of the show since IWC in its second season is that MW's "inside jokes" are often the part of the show that creates the chemistry. And last night he had Biffle cracking up as well along with Byrnes, who flat out giggles at some of what they perpetrate. Find another panel show where people regularly giggle!

Of course, it's much harder to know what's happening lately because they're always playing video with loud audio over the panelists and you can't see & hear them reacting to each other like the old show. I know, I'm beating a dead horse, but I'v got some old shows on tape which prove my point.

So many people seem to miss the good-natured jabs by MW's co-panelists like Chad and formerly Schrader which were their own inside jokes meant to "join in on the fun" rather than "keep Mikey in check" as is so often mis-interpreted.

Also: will someone please clue me in on why, in addressing the upcoming July 4th Daytona race, the producers chose to show highlights of the Daytona 500? We have Greg Biffle and Michael Waltrip, both of whom have won the 400 within the past few years, and they could have done a great montage of that. Instead we had a couple passing references to Biff's 1st Cup win there and that was it for the 400!

P.S. For those of us who enjoy MW's "antics" (and intelligent insights) I predict no change in his panel status for at least the forseeable future - sorry haters! :D

Jasper said...

BIG MISTAKE! If SPEED lets Michael go. Like it or not (MW haters) Michael is TWiN. Michael, Chad, Greg and Steve have a good thing, I hope they don't mess it, SPEED has finally gotten it right. Greg even said last night, he missed being on the show, the last couple of weeks, these guys have fun. If people that want more "serious discussion" watch Nascar Now. I rather have the TWiN guys in my living room than the uptight, buttondown NN guys anyday.

My 2 cents: Michael Waltrip goes, you can say good bye to a great show that has lasted longer than any NASCAR show. Reason being, Michael Waltrip!

Anonymous said...

If Steve Byrnes and MW want to just sit around and giggle at each others inside jokes, I'd suggest they get their own show. Then we could have Nascar Smarts followed by Nascar Giggles. Maybe Rutledge could be the host???

HMS rules said...

Hope Mikey stays on, it's a fun show with him, otherwise it would be just another NASCAR show.

Mikey Fan said...

Mickey is the ONLY reason I still watch. This program totally lost it's luster when it took away Allen Bestwick, Johnny Benson and Kenny Schrader. It will NEVER be as good and if Mikey goes, so do I!

Daly Planet Editor said...

Dannyboy,

I think the inside jokes appeal to the regular fans and I have been a viewer of this show since it started.

No issue with MW where I am concerned, just a good look at someone who is making one change that may affect other ones.

Great comments, keep them coming.

JD

tmil said...

Something about the guy just rubs me the wrong way...and he needs to learn the English language and quit making up words. He doesn’t even realize his words are made up. And the lame attempt at finding his hair style…..he still hasn’t made up his mind. Sport will be better off without him.

Ind14 said...

What does TWIN have against Stewart. They act like if they say his name the studio will fall down.

Anonymous said...

Sorry, but I think as long as Mikey is on the show, it sucks. I never missed it when JB and Schrader were on with him only because Schrader did an excellent job of making a bigger fool of MW than he did himself!

I think Tony Stewart would be perfect with Biffle and Knaus; Tony Stewart Live on Sirius was great, and Tony can always be counted on to let you know how he really feels. Nowadays, he's far less likely to be offensive in his delivery.

Anonymous said...
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HarpAmy/Amy in FL said...

I think that Michael is the show TWIN. He is the "franchise" of that show and the cornerstone that they built that show around. I know that Michael enjoys doing it and the chemistry between MW, Chad, Steve, and even Biffle now is really great. My favorite panel now is Steve, Chad, and Michael.

I would be sad if SPEED got rid of Michael.

JD,

Do you think that we need to email SPEED to let them know our feelings? Let us know.

Anonymous said...

I agree about Michael Waltrip being a reason why people are not drawn to the sport. Who wants to turn on the TV and watch a race being called by someone that sounds like they never made it out of the 3rd grade, referring to the drivers as "cats" and all the other mindless drivel that isn't bound to win over any new fans. And his shameless and endless sponsor plugs are tiring and unnecessary. Those sponsors are the only reason he is still in the sport at all, because he drags their names into any given conversations. If he actually believes that "Aaron's make people's dreams come true" then he truly is an idiot. When I watch a race I expect to hear some sponsor references, particularly from Victory Lane. But I should not have to hear it from the booth. I'd be embarassed if I was NAPA, sponsoring this below average driver who spins his car out every weekend.

Daly Planet Editor said...

Amy,

I don't think so. Both the SPEED and the NASCAR Media Group folks read your comments right here regularly.

By just expressing your feelings here, you get a lot across directly to the TV folks who produce, direct and announce the NASCAR races and shows.

We appreciate those folks reading TDP and also providing the feedback that lets us pick good topics to discuss.

I think SPEED and NMG will have things well in hand for next season once the MWR scenario shakes-out.

JD

scavenger said...

Still miss Schrader, won't miss Waltrip at all.

Anonymous said...

Mickey IS the show period.

Anonymous said...

The old original Inside Winston Cup show with Alan Bestwick, Kenny Schrader and Michael Waltrip was a great show. It was always funny and entertaining although none of the three claimed to have any outstanding knowledge of the sport. When Dale Earnhardt, Sr. picked Waltrip to drive the number 15 Chevrolet for DEI, Waltrip suddenly became "Mikey the Mouth", God's gift to NASCAR fans who was all knowing and more than willing to share his vast store of knowledge with us all. For a while, Schrader kept him in check but with Schrader gone, his mouth, which runs constantly, is more than I can stand. I no longer watch any show that he participates in.

Cotton

Anonymous said...

Yes, Mikey can be annoying at times, always plugging his sponsors
and talking all the time. But, that is why we love him. No, he is not the greatest driver in the world; but, after a very rough start, he is turning out to be a pretty good owner. The rumors have him driving 10-12 races next year, so he will still have that driver prospective to bring to TWIN on monday nights. He and Chad are great together. They need to maybe add a third panelist - maybe the Bif, maybe Ambrose (love the accent), maybe Kevin Harvick - just to add a bit more driver insite for next year. Just DONT get rid of Mikey!!!

Deborah said...

Anon at 4:45, might want to rethink that comment about Aaron's making dreams come true - in Michael's case they absolutely did because the sponsorship and support he got from Aaron's starting when MWR was just a single Nationwide car in his backyard through the present is one of the reasons why MWR has evolved into what it is today. So in Michael's case, Aaron's most definitely does help make dreams come true because they helped make his dream of owning Cup cars a reality.

Beyond that NAPA surely isn't embarrassed by Michael, they and the rest of his sponsors love what he does for them on TWiN and elsewhere. If Michael plugging his sponsors was such a problem I would think the TWiN producers would have told him to tone it down a long time ago, that they let him continue makes me think that they realize that it's part of the persona that he portrays on the show and part of what fans expect from him.

HarpAmy/Amy in FL said...

To add to what Deborah said, Michael also plugs the sponsors for the shows that he is involved in if they don't conflict with the sponsors that he already has at MWR. That makes him a dream for the shows and stuff as well.

SPEED and NMG, PLEASE, PLEASE keep Michael Waltrip on the shows that he is currently on. The owner perspective is something that brings another insight into the happenings of the races, especially the costs involved. He can answer the questions related to how much each thing costs him for his teams such as the fines and the licenses and tires and the like. I watch TWIN and the trucks because of Michael Waltrip. I am already having a time wrapping my brain around him not driving as much next year and I would hate to see him removed from the tv career that he already has.

Thanks,
Amy
Winter Haven, FL

Tracy said...

Mikey IS Monday night. The Biff is good too - just different than Chad. At least Biff tells it as he sees it.
Still love Schrader and miss him on Monday night. Catch him whenever he's on Wind Tunnel, etc.

Dot said...

@ Amy & Tracy, ditto.

Anonymous said...

I really don;t get the complaint about MW always schilling fo rhis sponsors.

How many times in one short interview does EVERY driver/Owner doesn't?

After all WHO'S PAYING THE BILLS?

Did anyone complain when in the background of one interview several weeks ago? You had Sadler, McMurray and Allmendinger holding up their Coke bottles and liberally drinking from them to gain more Coke points.

What better exposure can Geico have than MW playing up the sponsorship of the show. I mean really, They sponsor another team and driver with nothing to do with MWR.

Sprint gets the same treatment on almost every show.

And if I was MW, I too would be promoting every sponsor I had for sticking with him and his team the past 3 years.

He has a bigger stage than most other drivers/owners. Do you think if Jeff Gordon was on the same big stage we WOULDN'T hear all about the wonderful products DuPont has developed, or espouse the virtues of drinking Pepsi?

After all it is the Dupont Chevrolet, Lowes Chevrolet, the 3M Ford, the Miller Lite Dodge etc, etc.

Dave in Milwaukee

Anonymous said...

CAN'T WATCH THE SHOW BECUASE OF WALTRIP. ITS A MYSTERY HOW SOMEONE SO LACKING IN DRIVING TALENT CAN BE PROMOTED BY THE MEDIA SO MUCH. I GUESS THATS WHY NASCAR IS IN THE SAD STATE IT IS.

Anonymous said...

I hope waltrip is gone. Im so sick of NA$CAR promoting someone who simply sucks-up to the kingdom but has no driving talent at the same time. Part of the problem with NASCAR is the suck-up media lying to everyone about "how great" the races are. The sport has been damaged badly and it would be better off if waltrip disappeared. Clint Bowyer was right - Waltrip is the worst driver is NA$CAR, period!

Dannyboy said...

JD: Thanks for the reply. I guess I've somewhat misread some of your earlier comments. As for inside jokes: years of reading message boards like this prove to me that many fans really DON'T get them. And I'll repeat my comment to the producers: the way the show is presented often buries the inside jokes and asides that made the old IWC show so entertaining.

Anon 4:21 June 30th: It still hasn't occured to many who don't like MW that he and Schrader are VERY good friends and would kid each other mercilessly. I got this straight from Ken Schrader, who told me that he had "a LOT of fun" doing that show. Those who can't see past their personal dislike of MW never seem to grasp the meaning of "snappy reparteé".

Anon 4:45 Jun 30th: At the victory celebration following Reutimann's Southern 500 win, the Aaron's executive thanked MWR for helping them achieve their all-time record sales this past quarter (video available on MWR Facebook page). Seems like they and NAPA are most certainly NOT embarrassed. Big companies like that don't spend millions on TV & radio commercials (and NASCAR teams) because they're embarrassed. Give us a break!

Anon 2:26 Jun 30th wrote:
"If Steve Byrnes and MW want to just sit around and giggle at each others inside jokes, I'd suggest they get their own show."

Obviously you didn't get the memo: IT IS their show. Maybe you should stop watching.

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Daly Planet Editor said...

Thanks, they totally got those by me. Anytime something pops-up like that please feel free to drop me an email at editor@thedalyplanet.tv anytime.

I always appreciate your help.

JD

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Daly Planet Editor said...

Waltrip has always gotten some of the highest number of comments every time he is in the TDP columns.

He has been on SPEED for over a decade and regardless of personal feelings about him, has to be respected as a hard-working TV veteran.

We work very hard to keep things on an even keel, so I would again apologize to anyone who felt we did not delete the earlier comments in a timely fasion.

Any topic can be discussed without profanity or hateful speech.

Thanks,

JD

Anonymous said...

I always like TWIN and when I can't watch it I record it for later. Chad is a good addition and Greg improves everytime he is on. They all seem to tollerate Mike but have a good time in the process. Steve is a pleasant suprise since I thought he might not work out. I think they do a good job mixing it up but they need more special guests to bring fresh perspective to the show weekly. NASCAR is full of great personalities and we want to see them up close.

Anonymous said...

There is an unknow qualtity call "Chemistry" and this show has it. Don't let a personal dislike for Mike wreck the show. So what if there are a few "inside" jokes, it just makes me want to watch more so I can have a laugh too. Consider rotating in a one time guest while rotating the anylists every other show. I would like to see a mix of the long time name brands (Gordon, Jr, Stewart, Johnson) and newbies like (David Regan, Ruieterman, Logono)Pay the money and get these types on the show. There will be an ROI.

Ziggy said...

It's the humor that draws the viewers to TWIN. What's wrong with humor when reviewing highlights of past races ? Everyone on that show can take criticism of their driving abilities when warranted, i.e "He ran out of talent". Mikey gives us those "truly inside tidbits" that you'd never hear on NN. NN reminds of the 6:30PM Network Newscasts. Give me the un-rehearsed off the top discussions anytime.

Ziggy

Anonymous said...

MW is THE main reason to watch TWIN. If he goes, it's off to HBO on Monday nights.

Mikey's humor makes the show a must see ...

Anonymous said...

Waltrip is the reason I don't watch the show or the truck races. He's typical of what has happened to NA$CAR during the last decade. Its sad that anyone with some goofy shtick and a penchant for cheap sales adds everytime he manages to get his mug on TV is allowed to drive. He is one of the many reasons why this "sport" is in the tank and getting worse all the time.

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